7 Steps on How to Lubricate Your Treadmill
Treadmills might be the most common type of cardio equipment you’ll encounter. In fact, treadmills are widely considered an essential piece of gym equipment for all fitness enthusiasts and gym owners.
These machines provide a wide range of purposes, including cardio exercise and fat burning, helping people achieve their fitness needs. Furthermore, treadmills are a great piece of equipment for people of all fitness levels with adjustable speed and incline levels.
Let’s not forget either, that treadmills are a safe alternative to bring your cardio workout indoors if the weather or conditions outdoors aren’t ideal.
At Akfit, we are a Canadian specialty fitness store located in Sudbury, Ontario and have been working closely with our clients in Northern Ontario, the rest of Canada, and beyond for over three decades. We often are asked about treadmills and how to properly take care of them.
In this article, we cover a step-by-step process on how to properly lubricate a treadmill belt, and why you should be regularly doing so.
In this article:
What is a Treadmill?
A staple of most home and commercial gyms, a treadmill is an exercise machine that allow users to walk, jog, or run in place.
The walking belt, which is usually driven by an electric motor, Rotates from the front to the rear. This provides the user the experience to move at a speed in unison with the belt’s motion.
They're a popular machine for cardiovascular exercises, since walkers can go at a speed they’re comfortable with, and dedicated runners can really work up a sweat.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that treadmills are the largest-selling exercise equipment on the market. Everyone can make good use of a treadmill.
Why Lubricate Your Treadmill?
Lubricating your treadmill belt is an essential chore that you should add to your workout routines to increase the lifespan of your treadmill.
If your treadmill requires lubrication, and you aren’t sure what type of lubrication to use and how to apply, always refer back to the owners’ manual. However, most treadmill lubricants are water based silicone. Do not use petroleum products such as WD-40 on your treadmill.
Applying treadmill lubricant to your machine reduces friction between the belt and the walking deck When you don’t regularly lubricate the belt, the risk of your treadmill becoming damaged is significantly higher. You could prematurely wear out the deck and belt causing a major problem for your treadmill.
Skipping or not keeping up with proper maintenance ultimately puts more stress on your treadmill and could affect the performance of the machine.
Does My Treadmill Need Lubrication?
When you first purchase your treadmill we recommend you lubricate the deck with a silicone based lubricant before using your treadmill for the time (or at least check to see if necessary). While treadmills are usually pre-lubricated by the manufacturer, there is a possibility that they may be sitting in a warehouse for an extended period of time.
Lubricating your treadmill at least once every three months is a good practice to follow. However, if your treadmill is under high-volume usage (around 10 hours a week), you should apply this practice once every month or every 150 miles.
If you haven’t been using your treadmill as frequently as you once were, you may be asking yourself: How do I know when I should lubricate my treadmill? In addition, treadmills that have been sitting in storage for months will have had the lubricant dry out; therefore lubricate before using again.
The most common thing that will alert you if you need to lubricate your belt is to touch the deck surface under the walking belt. If you don’t feel a waxy oily surface or any residue from the last lubrication, it is time to perform maintenance on your belt.
How to Apply Treadmill Lubrication
1. Gather the Tools That You’ll Need
Thankfully, lubricating your treadmill isn’t a complicated process so the tools that are generally required are minimal. In most cases all you will need is an allen wrench, t-wrench, or a screwdriver accompanied by your silicone lubricant for your treadmill. Thankfully, we Akfit do sell dyaco treadmill lubrication at Akfit.
Always refer to your owners’ manual when servicing your treadmill.
2. Turn Off Your Treadmill
Before you attempt to perform maintenance on your treadmill, make sure it is unplugged or turned off completely. This is important to prevent injury.
3. Expose the Deck
Next you’ll want to access the deck of your treadmill.
Grab your allen wrench, t-wrench, or screwdriver to loosen the rear roller bolts. Count exactly the same number of turns on both sides; generally 8-10 turns counter-clockwise will give you enough slack on the belt to lift it.
This process can be fairly simple but it is important to reference the owners’ manual. Once you have enough slack (enough to lift the belt slightly), you are ready to lubricate it.
Using a clean cloth wipe the dirt and dust from beneath the walking belt
4. Applying the Lubricant
This part of the process can be a little bit difficult, especially if it’s your first time.
First you’ll want to determine your primary impact zone on the belt and apply the lubricant on the deck directly under the belt where your feet are creating the most impact. Approximately from the front to the middle.
Squirt about 5 ml of silicone based lubricant in a zig-zag motion between the walking belt and the flat running deck surface , Do not apply on the top of the running belt itself where your running shoe lands.
5. Lower the Belt
Once you have lubricated the deck, lower down the belt to the centre of the deck and reverse the same number of turns to the rear roller bolts that you loosened in step 3 This ensures that the belt is exactly the same tension as prior to servicing.
6. Start up Your Treadmill
After tensioning the belt, stay off the machine and turn it on. Run the belt at a slow speed (anywhere from 1 mph to 3 mph) for around 3 minutes to allow the treadmill to spread the silicone.
Then walk on your treadmill at a similar slow speed to complete spreading the lubricant and to make sure the belt has proper alignment and tension.
7. Unplug again
Finally, unplug your treadmill and use a soft cloth to wipe off any potential excess lubricant on the side rails of the treadmill.. After that, you’re all good to go!
Thankfully, that’s all it takes to lubricate your treadmill. It can seem like a daunting task at first, but once you do it a couple of times, the process really becomes quite simple.
Lubricating your treadmill on a regular basis ensures your deck and belt will stay healthy which increases the longevity from your product. After all, you’ll most likely want a good return on your treadmill investments.
Maintaining your treadmill doesn’t have to be a complicated process. However, it is essential to increase the lifespan of your exercise equipment if you take care of it.
Reach Out to Akfit
So now that you have all the tools on how to lubricate your treadmill, you may be without one very important tool: silicone based lubricant for treadmills. Thankfully at Akfit, we sell treadmill lubricant from $16 to $30.
If you are still unsure on which lubricant is right for your treadmill, or need more help in figuring out how to apply it, we can help. Our fitness experts have been working closely with our clients since 1989 to help them reach their fitness goals. This doesn’t just include selling products, but also sharing our fitness expertise as well.
We highly encourage you to reach out to us with any of your fitness related questions. From equipment maintenance to finding the right products for you, your family, and your budget, we’re here to help.
You can also visit us in-store at our Sudbury location or book a virtual meeting with us to discuss any of your fitness related questions. If you are a commercial gym owner we can help provide expertise maintaining your equipment as well.